In my household, we go through a LOT of Olive Oil.
I mean seriously, a LOT. I'm constantly finding myself having to go buy more...and thinking to myself... 'Didn't I JUST buy that?' But can you blame us, really? It truly does add such a deliciously rich flavor to every single dish!
Like I said, we love our olive oil! So when I was given the chance to review some European Extra Virgin Olive Oil, naturally I jumped at the chance! Take a look at these quick facts and tips about Extra Virgin Olive Oil-
• Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) is the freshly pressed juice of olives. It is cold pressed, so no chemicals or heat are used in the process...giving you all the best properties of the olives.
• To be considered EVOO, acidity must be below 0.8% or virtually free of acidity. No, this isn't about flavor or even pH as one might assume, but the % oleic acid (fatty acid). Higher levels indicate improper production and rancidity.
• EVOO must also have a peroxide value must be below 20 millequivalents of oxygen/kilo of oil, which indicates the amount of oxidation or aging that’s occurred as a result of exposure to oxygen, light and heat.
• Did you know a panel of expert tasters trained by the International Oil Council test for taste defects and the presence of positive attributes of fruitiness, bitterness and spiciness? If the oil doesn’t have the signature fruity taste and harmonious balance it cannot be considered Extra Virgin. This is great news to think about when you want to get the same great, high quality taste with whatever oils you use!
• Different varieties of oils work great with different dishes! You can use lighter, delicate oils for salad dressings or as a condiment over mild foods like vegetables, fish, eggs or potatoes. Pair heavier robust oils with hearty foods that can stand up to the intense flavor, like steak or spicy soup. I find myself using robust oils more, but like to keep a little of both for every occasion.
• EVOO has a high smoking point of 400°F. This makes it perfect for cooking, but can also be used to enhance any ol' dish with a drizzle before serving! So many options!
• When not using, store oil in a dark cool pantry away from heat and light- these can cause decay. 57°F is the best temperature for storing and be careful not to store your oil next to the stove. EVOO has the best freshness when used within 6 months of opening--- assuming it lasts that long, of course!!!
Some pretty interesting stuff, right? I have to admit, I didn't know much of that myself- in fact I actually was quite guilty of storing oil near my stove! Oops! Who knew that so much went into not just creating, but ensuring our oils last as long as possible with the best possible flavor?
But even with all this information, did you know that all EVOO is not created equal? Which leads us to the real question of the day--- why European Extra Virgin Olive Oil? What's the difference and how can I find it in my local grocery store?
First and foremost, location, location, location!
When we think olives, we think Europe, right? And with good reason. The olive tree has been revered in Europe since Antiquity. Over thousands of years farmers have evolved hundreds of varieties of olive trees (cultivars) and optimized them for different environment conditions and terrains to produce the most delicious yields. Simply put- these farmers KNOW their olives! This history and knowledge of the plant gives us the best extra virgin olive oil around the globe.
And even within Europe, there are many factors that can impact the taste- such as type of olive tree, the region its grown (climate and soil) and when it is harvested. Olives harvested early in the season, around late August, depending on region are under-ripe and gives and oil that are greener, more bitter and pungent. Those that are harvested at the end of the season )around late November through December) are over ripe and offer a mild, more buttery taste. Origin can make a big difference too. Spanish oil is typically golden yellow with a fruity, nutty flavor. Italian olive oil is often dark green and has an herbal aroma and a grassy flavor. Greek olive oil packs a strong flavor and aroma and tends to be green. French oil is typically pale in color and has a mild flavor. With so many different flavor profiles available, you're sure to find many you love, so it's a great idea to keep a variety for various occasions!
About Farchioni Olive Oil
Of the entire Farchioni offering the real hero is its extra-virgin olive oil Il Casolare, with its slightly fruity fragrance and balanced flavor that make it stand out in even the most refined dishes. Cold pressed using a variety of olives that make it possible to keep the green color and unique flavor unaltered over time, it comes in three versions: Grezzo Naturale, Grezzo Naturale Fruttato Intenso and Biologico.
Ready to experience the flavor of European Extra Virgin Olive Oil in your home? Connect with the Flavor Your Life campaign online to learn more about European Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
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